I first fell in love with Goat’s Cheese Crème Brûlée whilst dining in Lyon. We were having a quick lunch in a pretty little restaurant on the Rue Mercière – which can be exceptionally hit and miss. On this occasion though, we were extremely lucky – especially given that a waiter dropped a glass from the second floor to the first and almost hit a customer – though we found both an excellent Goat’s Cheese Crème Brûlée and a good, safe seat upstairs. I’ve had my fair share of Crème Brûlées in France – from Green Tea to Génépi infused varieties – and all have been beautiful – but there was something just so very special about this Goat’s Cheese Crème Brûlée. What stood out was the crispness of the filling – tart to the tongue and yet deliciously creamy and reassuringly firm… but after just a few spoonfuls it was gone and I have yet to come across such an offering in a restaurant again.
This particular Goat’s Cheese Crème Brûlée recipe focuses on retaining the classic Crème Brûlée flavours and textures – whilst introducing just a single new ingredient – Goat’s Cheese. It goes perfectly served as a dessert to French Classics such as Coq au Vin and Poulet Valleé D’Auge, though to be fair I can eat it after anything.
Some Tips Before You Start
In remembrance of the late great Keith Floyd I always try to cook with a glass of wine in hand – I suggest you do the same.
- When selecting your Goat’s Cheese – choose one which is firm, even hard to touch. I believe you should select it on personal preference but something with a tart lemony after taste suits this recipe well – don’t go after anything which has too strong a flavour otherwise it’ll overpower the cream a tad too much. I prefer to buy my cheeses from the market – though I’ve also used Chavroux Goat’s Cheese which is readily available in French supermarkets. If you’re in the UK – then ask for a firm Goat’s Cheese at your cheese counter or at any market that has a good cheese seller – Borough Market in London is a good example.
- Don’t use a mixer for this recipe – stir everything by hand as not to cause an influx of bubbles in the mixture.
- This recipe is for two but the ingredients can easily be multiplied – and if you’re cooking for yourself then simply make two and enjoy the second one a day later!
- Don’t be afraid to edit the recipe a little to your liking! A little creativity goes a long way in the kitchen!
Ingredients (makes 2):
- 280ml double cream
- 150g Goat’s Cheese (a hard variety)
- 2 vanilla pods
- 3 egg yolks
- 20g white sugar for the custard
- 4 tbsp of mixed white and brown sugar for the top (if you prefer you can use Demerara sugar or caster sugar as they are quite interchangeable)
1. Preheat the oven to 150°C and put 2 small ovenproof ramekins in a baking tin. Pour the cream into a small pan and slit the vanilla pods in half lengthways. Scrape out the seeds and put both the pods and the seeds into the pan with the cream. Bring the mixture to the boil over a medium-low heat.
2. Keeping a watchful eye over the cream – put the yolks, Goat’s Cheese and sugar into a medium-sized heatproof bowl and stir until combined, and when the cream begins to boil, carefully remove the vanilla pods and then pour the cream on to the Goat’s Cheese, yolk and sugar mix, stirring constantly to mix.
3. Divide the mixture between the ramekins and pour cold water into the baking tin until it comes approximately two-thirds of the way up the ramekins and then bake for about 40 minutes until the custard is set – as a tip it should only wobble faintly when shaken – but it should wobble! Cool and then chill until cold – I suggest for a minimum of 2 hours – though you can probably get away with 30 minutes if time is an issue.
4. Take the ramekins out of the fridge around 15 minutes before you plan on serving. Scatter the tops of the cold Brûlées with the white and brown sugar mixture – making sure that the sugar is even on top – one way to do is is to start with a pile in the middle and then gently shake the ramekin – scattering the sugar to the sides of the ramekin – you should still be able to see the colour of the cream mixture below the sugar. When you’re satisfied, use a blowtorch to caramelise the tops – keep the ramekin set down on the work surface and gently rotate it as the top begins to brown. Serve straight away if you like your Crème Brûlée slightly warm or give it 5 minutes to cool down if you prefer it cold.
So what do you think of our Goat’s Cheese Crème Brûlée Recipe? Do you prefer your Crème Brûlée according to the traditional recipe – or are you happy to experiment a little? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!